Gloucester Township Elementary
Gloucester Township Elementary School was built in 1925. Its cornerstone indicates that construction was started in that year. The school opened its doors to students in 1926.
The original format had the building designated as a junior high school and holding students in grades 7 and 8. The building was called Blackwood Junior School when it first opened. Its original sign read “Blackwood School”.
Records and primary sources (former students) indicate that early grades were eventually housed in the building starting as early as the 40’s and through the 50’s. Former students will indicate that grades K through 8 were located in the school. In 1958, it was renamed the Gloucester Township Junior School and even included 9th graders for a few years.
In 1964 it became Gloucester Township School. Fourth & fifth graders from those neighborhoods then attended GTS for grades 4 & 5.
The school continued to serve grades 4 & 5 through 1974. 2 classes of third grade were added for one year (74-75) making GTS grades 3, 4, & 5.
In 1975-76, the district rezoned again and GTS joined all the other elementary schools to become a pure “neighborhood” school and hold grades K-4. Grade 5 was sent to the CW Lewis Middle School but returned to GTS in 1981-82, making the school a K-5 building. The K-5 format is the current level served by the school and all other township elementary schools at the present time.
The early 90’s saw the building officially designated as Gloucester Township Elementary School so it could establish its own identity as an elementary building (the word “elementary” was added to avoid confusion with the district itself) . A new marquee sign containing the new name was erected by the EPC (Educators & Parents Committee) overlooking Black Horse Pike in the mid 90’s and the current identity change was completed.
At the present time, GTES is an extremely successful Kindergarten to Grade 5 school which has established a reputation for high academic achievement. Its two foot thick concrete walls make it one of the safest structures in the area. The vintage architecture gives the school a traditional feel of family closeness and warmth that is coveted and closely guarded by its community. The school serves Blackwood Estates, Blackwood proper (BHP area), Liberty Park, Grenloch Gardens, Lakewood Manor Apartments, Amber Court, Grenloch, Davistown Rd. area, Blackwood Lake area, Lakeland, and Buttonwood Village Apartments.
The school’s famous Americanism Program has received national recognition and is now celebrated in November near Veterans Day & Election Day. GTES has been completely renovated in the past 10 years with new doors & windows, climate control, interior & exterior appointments, a 30 terminal computer lab, mini computer labs in all classrooms & instructional areas, new office space for staff, and state of the art technology and communication in the office and throughout the building.
A loyal and highly dedicated neighborhood sends second and third generation family members to GTES, as former students move back into the community so their own children can also attend GTES!
List of Principals
1925-1927 Mr. Edwin M. Frazier
1927-1931 Miss Eastlack
1931-1941 Mrs. Entriken
1941-1953 Mr. C. W. Lewis
1953-1956 Mrs. Mawson
1956-1961 Mr. J.W. Lilley
1961-1963 Mr. Tronolone
1963-1990 Mr. Ulrich
1990-1992 Mr. Seddon
1992-1998 Mr. Pollino
1998-present Mr. Gentile